A group of United States Marines published revenge porn featuring their fellow Marines. The Vox article was written to get clicks on a holiday weekend that has slower traffic. It’s textbook clickbait framed as “toxic masculinity,” and the American political right was all too happy to oblige the progressive media by chomping down so hard on the weeks-old clikbait they likely chipped a tooth or two. (This post will not be linking any of the hottake deflections that social media saw all Memorial Day long.)
Allegations of publicizing revenge porn and sexual harassment of unwilling individuals have been permeating the headlines on days that aren’t holidays for soldiers that made the ultimate sacrifice for months now, since March to be more accurate. This is an undisputed fact.
Certainly, one can be annoyed that writers at Vox had the opportunity to troll their conservative opposition, but Vox didn’t publish the revenge porn. So, maybe one should measure and prioritize one’s outrage.
Denouncing these immoral and morale killing actions shouldn’t be a long drawn out debate. Publishing sexually explicit material of an unwilling individual is wrong and grounds to be booted from the Marine Corps.
Because people like Kirsten Gillibrand are now focusing on the private actions of these Marines, instead of the missions other marines could be tasked to complete. The right is claiming it hurts the overall security of the nation. Conservatives attacked the timing in hopes of deflecting how a few Marines reflect poorly on the entire branch of service. It is also nonsense.
If it were remotely true, according to the conservative axiom of personal responsibility, the blame would fall on the Marines who put their beloved Corps in this position by sharing photos of unwilling women — not the people who are bothered by the idea of Marines acting like slighted high school sophomores.
Similarly, many are understandably aghast by a statement made by Philippines President Rodirigo Duterte about taking the punishment for rape charges for his troops. As well as with the abhorrent practices of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This is an issue we must temporarily uncouple from foreign policy debate for the sake of deterrence and stability in the Pacific this is not an issue we should wait on or shy away from here at home. It is because we have to overlook the imperfections of disgustingly flawed allies that America should look at itself critically.
When uncoupling an issue from the debate is not an option just address it honestly.